Roses and the weekend

It’s our last bank holiday weekend until August…. fingers crossed for sunshine!  We will be heading to friend Emily’s wedding and then to Cardiff to catch up with rellies.   In the meantime,  I leave you with a hastily-snatched iPhone photo of a perfect rose bush I found while out the other day.  It is my real-life inspiration for some embroidery, although I actually have to DO the sewing in order to be able to show it to you.

Have a good weekend!

A visit to Kelmscott Manor

Last week I went to Kelmscott Manor, which was William Morris’ home in the Cotswolds. It is full to the brim with wonderful textiles and objects, which is a dream for someone like me who is interested in textile arts and making things by hand. Unfortunately you can’t take photos in the house, but the garden has also been filled with plants that Morris might have had, and been inspired by.  For more detail of the contents of the house, do click on the link to its website as they’ve got lots of photos and videos of it.

The things I found most incredible were the embroideries done by May Morris (William’s daughter) and Jane Morris (his wife, and May’s mother). I have been inspired to do some stitching of my own in homage to the pieces I saw at Kelmscott, but will share it later as it’s still very much in the design phase at the moment!

Peanut butter cup photos

I posted a little while ago (here) about making peanut butter cups.  They are a bit of a fiddle, but sooo delicious.  I made some to take as a present to Emily, my friend with the roses, and actually had the proper size paper cases this time.  They were consequently much more presentable than the first attempt, and even more tasty:

The recipe, again, is here.  I must confess though that I didn’t follow it at all, but just mixed in however much I felt like of powdered sugar, digestive biscuits (the UK alternative to graham crackers, and much tastier than they sound) and sea salt with the peanut butter to make the scrumptious filling.

Friends and white roses

I visited a lovely friend in London last weekend and she has the most incredible white rose bush in her back garden, which was pouring forth faintly scented blossoms.  I still haven’t graduated to setting my camera to ‘manual’ but will see to that in June when I take an online photography course.  For now, this was my attempt to capture the roses:

Now I am wishing for a garden…. or maybe just some roses in a vase.

A quantity of chairs

In addition to the pink planks, we also picked up a number of chairs on Thursday.  They are not particularly sturdy (to say the least) but this was factored into the price.  They are very attractive though.

This is our ‘shabby chic’ white farmhouse chair-  all it needs is a light sand to take the sharp edges off, and then it will be left as it is.  It currently resides in the corner of the bedroom.

Two very rickety chairs indeed.  But charming… and we will attempt some surgery to see if they can be made a bit more sturdy.  They also invite the possibility of cushions, which are always fun.

And finally…

What will be, if I ever get around to it, my inaugural home upholstery project.  How hard can it be?  It’s just a circle of fabric and some squishy stuff underneath, I presume. Perhaps a bit of practice with a staple gun.  I am looking into it.  One thing there is no shortage of around here is tools with which it is possible to kill or seriously maim oneself (a circular saw was purchased and used with aplomb for the bed-building… what’s that you say?  We’re only renting a two-bedroom flat? Pshaw…)


Apologies for the drawn-out suspense!  Our internets are being difficult.

The pink planks have turned into….

a bed!

It is very exciting sleeping in a pink bed, particularly a hand-made one.  Mark constructed it over the course of a few hours by building a frame on which the planks sit, and then screwing in a few of them to stop them separating.  But it comes apart very easily in preparation for the next move, and also in case I get tired of the pink and want to, for example, paint them white, or turn them over and have them plain wood (although there’s scribbles on the underside which would need to be sanded off/otherwise dealt with).

The design was loosely inspired by this bed I saw on Design*Sponge.  I know ours is ever-so-slightly less minimalist and elegant, but pink was what there was.  And, large as our bedroom is, it’s not quite THAT big so as to allow for a proper wide platform on each side, but we can still stand on the edges of the platform to get into bed.

We also wanted a headboard, but on reflection I think it could be a couple of planks shorter. (Don’t tell Mark).  More on the fetching white chair in the next post…

The pink plank mystery

We had a VERY exciting day at the reclamation yards on Thursday.  There are so many things to share, I will have to post them over several days, but the first are these:

Painted pink tongue-in-groove floorboards.  They were just there in the wood pile, all beautiful and pink and worn around the edges.  In the above photo they have been cut up a bit and Mark has given them a bit more of a sand to help the ‘worn’ effect along.  Can you guess what they are for? (If you know already, don’t give it away!!)